The theremin is not only the world's first electronic instrument, but the only one that makes music entirely in the air: the performer does not touch it at any point, except to turn it on. It's simple enough to create sound effects on the thermin -- and thus it's been widely used on scary movie soundtracks and as a distinctive adjunct to such pop classics as the Beach Boys' "Good Vibrations" -- but incredibly difficult to control as an artistic instrument. It was Clara Rockmore who became the world-renowned champion of the concert theremin, making three cross-country tours, and performing concertos with the Philadelphia Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic. In 1979, she was featured in a live broadcast on WQXR, together with two renowned colleagues, the violinist Erick Friedman, and her sister, pianist Nadia Reisenberg, plus eight members of the Violincello Society of New York. The original tapes are being be digitally re-mastered, and while the commercials will be gone, the resulting CD will contain all the artist interviews, along with live performances of favorite pieces by Bach, Beethoven, Saint-Saens, and more.
Here's one of my favorites: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pSzTPGlNa5U
- (30 days)